I don't feel like posting on anything style related today. I wrote the piece below in early December 2006 just a week or so after the Sean Bell murder. At the time I didn't have a blog. (My friend did however post it on his MySpace blog - thanks Ans.) Now I do have one so I feel the need to re-post it in light of yesterday's verdict. I left all the errors in because I was free writing and this isn't something I want "cleaned-up".
A lot of things in this world don't make sense to me. I don't understand why my friend Cocoa has to go to Iraq in two months. She's literally one of the sweetest people I know. I don't get why people are homeless and sleeping on the street on the same block where apartments are selling for millions of dollars. It doesn't seem right that a 13 year old can't make it to homeroom on time because she had to go through the school metal detector first.
But for the past week, the thing I just can't seem to get out of my mind is the death of Sean Bell and the shooting of his two friends. Moreover, it's the effect this murder is going to have on the family he left behind. Maybe it's because the murder took place 15 minutes from where I live. Maybe it's because it happened hours before he was to marry his high school sweetheart. Or it could be that I'm just maturing and becoming more sensitive to senseless acts like this - that maternal gene kicking in. All I know is that my heart is breaking for Sean's fiancé, Nicole, his children and the rest of his family and loved ones. The complete ridiculous way that the NYPD and local government are handling this situation is beyond infuriating. The last I heard/read is that investigators are looking for a fourth man who apparently had a gun and fled the scene. What the crap for? But that's a whole 'notha rant’.
What I can't seem to get out of my mind is Sean's fiancé, the mother of their two children and how through all of this, she has appeared so graceful yet very strong. I'm sure she's still in total shock. But from the little I have read about Nicole this past week, I have so much respect and admiration for her. One report told of how she requested the pastor who was scheduled to marry her and Sean that he still marries them. Wow. Talk about heavy. I guess she wanted it to happen regardless. That's love. I have witnessed from friends and family how planning your wedding can consume so much of your life - even the smallest of celebrations. This woman went from preparing her wedding, probably what she thought would be one of the happiest times of her life to having to plan a funeral. As if that's not enough, she had to comfort her children through all this. Though one child is an infant, she still has to be a mother to them both. In another report, I read that the oldest child recently lost a puppy and was obviously quite sad about it. To help console her, Sean told his daughter that the puppy had gone to be with the sun so whenever the sun was shining, the puppy was smiling down on her. After having to break the news of her father's death to this same child, Nicole told the little girl that Daddy had left to be with the puppy. That's a lot for any kid to handle.
Now, in the next few months and probably years, Nicole has to talk to attorneys, journalists, even folks trying to make money off her unfortunate story with book or movie proposals. I know people, innocent people, die everyday. But if we start getting so caught up in our daily lives that we become immune to people like Sean and Nicole, well that just doesn't make sense to me either. I thought about just putting this in my journal. But it's not enough this time. And I don't have a blog or a myspace page to post this on. I don't care if nobody responds to this, or if anyone doesn’t like it or agree with it. I had to get it off my chest and my heart. It's been there for a week now and I can't shake it. But something about typing this helps ease the hurt and confusion. I would like to do something more - and hopefully I will. I can write a letter to a politician, send a card or flowers to the families of those who lost loved ones, march in a rally at City Hall. But right now, at 4:37am on Sat, 12.2 - this is it.
The universe works in such mysterious ways. God willing my friend Cocoa will return from fighting Bush's war in Iraq this weekend. Supposedly she was over there for the last year and four months to help ensure safety and democracy.
Sean can't come back and the very people who were supposed to be ensuring his safety are the reason.
Nope, this still doesn't make any sense to me.